Iowa Chief Counties

I struggled to find a title for my post tonight. All of the titles that were coming to mind were way to long. So here is what tonight’s post is about. This post is about some of the Native American chiefs who had counties in Iowa named after them for the part that they played in Iowa History.

I will not go into too much detail on each chief as I am still in the process of doing research on the Black Hawk War which some of these chiefs took part in.

The pictures in this post all come from one of my Grandma’s Scrapbooks. The pictures are from a newspaper special, but if I can find the original source I will note it.

I also pondered the order that I would present them and finally decided I would just go in alphabetical order.

Charles Bird Kirklin, Chief Keokuk, Iowa History, Black Hawk War, Iowa, Native AmericanThe first one is Chief Keokuk who was a  chief of the Sacs and Foxes.

This painting is by Charles Bird King and shows Chief Keokuk and his son.

Chief Keokuk is honored by both a town and a county being named after him. Keokuk, Iowa is in the far South-East corner of Iowa and is where the chief is buried.

The county seat of Keokuk County is Sigourney. Also in Keokuk County is the little town of What Cheer which is one of places where my Mother grew up.

Chief Mahaska, Iowa Indians, native american chief, Iowa counties, OskaloosaNext up is Chief Mahaskah who was from the Iowa tribe.

The image here comes from Futon’s Red Men of Iowa published in 1882.

Mahaskah was also know as White Cloud. There are a few interesting stories about him that I may share in a future post.

The county seat of Mahaskah county is Oskaloosa.

Chief Powasheek, Powashiek County, Iowa, Grinnel, Native American ChiefChief Powasheek is from the Fox tribe. He was one of the chiefs who signed the treaty that ended the Black Hawk War.

The county seat of Powashiek county is Montezuma, but the largest town is Grinnell.

Powashiek county is just above Keokuk and Mahaska counties.

Chief Wapella, Chief of the Mesquakees, Ottumwa, Iowa, Wapello County, Iowa History, native americans, American IndiansBy presenting them alphabetically, I saved my favorite chief for last.

Chief Wapella was from the Mesquakee tribe. For more about this chief you can visit my post: Chief Wapello

The picture above comes from History of the Indian Tribes of North America by McKenney and Hall.

The Chief Wapella and Chief Powasheek pictures are also by Charles Bird King.

The county seat of Wapello county is Ottumwa which is one of the places where I grew up.

Mahaska, Keokuk, Poweshiek, Wapello, Native American Chiefs, IowaHere are the four counties on a map of Iowa. Wapello county is just below Keokuk and Mahaska counties and Poweshiek is above them.

Do you know who or what your county was named after?



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1 Response to Iowa Chief Counties

  1. Glenda McDougal says:

    Yes, I do.

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